Recruitment Time-to-Fill Too Long?

If your organization has a time-to-fill average that’s too long, who gets blamed – the recruiter or the hiring manager? If you are a recruiter, you probably get the finger pointed at you most of the time, but I think the blame should be shared.

Here are the top three reasons I believe most often lead to lengthy fill times.

1. The recruiter begins recruiting candidates for a new requisition without discussing or clarifying the true needs and expectations with the hiring manager.
2. The hiring manager changes the specs after seeing a few candidates.
3. The hiring manager does not make him/herself available for interviews on a timely basis.

Avoiding or minimizing these delays can be realized relatively simply by:

1. Starting the process with a one-on-one meeting with the hiring manager to establish a complete and mutual understanding of the need, as well as the expectations and preferences of the manager can avoid many of the false steps that can arise from recruiting only on the basis of a written job requisition.
2. If the “agreement” derived from the meeting described above has been modified, schedule a frequent (weekly?) check-in time with the manager to allow for any needed mid-course corrections that might be overlooked or not communicated by a busy hiring manager.
3. Establish a service level agreement at the outset that details what and when the recruiter will deliver, and when and how the hiring manager is expected to respond and act. It would seem to me that 48- to 72-hours would be a reasonable time for a hiring manager to respond to a referral from a trusted recruiting partner.

I will acknowledge that, in the people business, every situation is different. However, I believe that at least 80% of the delays are affected as described here. As always, I would welcome hearing about your personal experiences and perspectives on this subject.

Gary Cluff
Cluff and Associates

Thanks to this week’s guest, Gary Cluff. Gary is known for best practices in recruiting, branding strategies, recruiting metrics, employee referral programs and recruitment process improvement.


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